Renwick play some ‘sixy’ football against C.O.I

18 Feb

Renwick House F.C were back in action this week at the Ozone playing against a Church of Ireland outfit that had sprung a few surprise results this season. Manager McCullough was keen to stress to his team that given their recent form, this would be no easy match for the Elmwood side; “more than enough” was a phrase that was bandied about quite abit in the pre-match chat. McCullough only had his final XI confirmed on mid-morning of match day as the return of Joel Loughridge was saved for a rainier day and tactical decisions were thought out. Renwick lined up with a strong team, Michael Hawthorne and Gareth Smith came in to boost the Renwick defence whilst Gavin Can’trunaboutwell and Andrew McKelvey formed a strong centre midfield pairing. Joel Cromie managed to skip P.E class for the week and take up a formidable strike partnership with the inform Andrew Peoples.

The Ozone was bathed in sunshine as the game kicked off at a frenetic pace, Renwick were keen to make an early impression but it was the Elmwood side who nearly conceded first. After recieving a probing pass, a C.O.I striker managed to find a bit of space and blast the ball at an oncoming McCullough from close range only to have the ball hit off Smith and trickle just inches wide of the left post. After this early let off, Renwick began to build on some good territory and possession, in particular Andrew McKelvey squeezed the oppositions midfielders for time and space at every opportunity. After a series of close chances, Renwick took the lead from a corner on the right, a ball swung in wasn’t dealt with well by the C.O.I defence and after some panicked kicking, the ball was bundled in at the nearpost by frontman Peoples to take a 1-0 lead.

Renwick House taking a 1-0 lead

Following the usual post-goal rant by the skipper, Renwick were keen to consolidate on their good start, however it was the opposition who went on to register on the scoresheet. Some good possession in the middle of the park for C.O.I and Renwick’s poor ability to deal with aerial challenges in the opening stages led to the ball being played to the left wing who found time and space to provide a cross into the area. McCullough read the situation to come out and retrieve the ball in the air with ease, however the C.O.I winger managed to scuff his attempted cross which then took a looping trajectory over the keeper and into the bottom right hand corner making it 1-1. The Church of Ireland side came close again with McCullough misjudging a shot from the right side of the box after McCollum had been beaten, the ball cannoned of the stanchion of the goal and out, bringing relief to Manager and team.

A frustrating period followed for the Elmwood side, chance after chance went begging, with Peoples, Hawthorne, Aicken and McCollum all guilty of not doing better with their efforts. The half ended 1-1 and Renwick were left with much food for thought going into the second half. With Manager McCullough not being tested that much due to a great work being put in by Smith and Hanna at the back, he had much opportunity to change things tactically during the match. Blackwell, Aicken R.Cromie, Hawthorne and Fallows were all moved around or rotated to try and keeping Renwick ticking over.

The second half began brightly, with Renwick urged to take the positives from the first half and be more clinical in the final third. Immediately the players responded and Andrew Peoples rose highest at the backpost to nod in a throw from Andrew McKelvey, Robert Cromie celebrated equally as hard on the touchline as it was his advice to Peoples which resulted in the goal. The old adage of “one bringing two” came true for Renwick, as minutes later it was Peoples again heading in from a well directed corner from Joel Cromie, completed the Donegal man’s hat trick and making the score 3-1.

The game was over at as a contest by this stage as C.O.I heads began to drop and their skill levels dropped as a result. The floodgates opened for Renwick and midfield had a free reign of the park as each ball that was hoofed away was surged back with precision and poise as more goals were sought after. Good combination from Blackwell and Aicken on the right led to Renwick’s fourth goal, as Robert Cromie recieved the ball and fired in a snapshot past the keeper just minutes after being brought on up front. It was Robert Cromie again to make it 5-1 for his team as he recieved a precise through ball to slot it in beautifully to the bottom left hand corner.

Some of C.O.I’s players were still keen to play on for pride and McCullough was tested twice, one shot firing over and the other just wide. However, as two girls were brought on for the anglican side, attacking options were limited and McCullough again resorted to filling his game time by making switches to his team. Renwick’s sixth and final goal came from Joel Cromie, who was justly rewarded for a fine all round game, he recieved the ball on the edge of the area and proceeded it shoot with great power and positioning to net the ball into the top of the goal. With the score at 6-1, the game descended into slight mayhem, with every one searching for a goal and lots of space opening up, Renwick saw the time through without conceding and they recorded their third win on the bounce, a delightful post-Christmas record for the Renwick team.

Renwick's defensive line

Robert Cromie before his second goal


The evidence of this match suggests that Renwick have benefitted from a lot of time on the pitch of late, their first ever training session and the Minister’s match have prooved to be vital game time for the players and the Manager will be keen to see this new found confidence and fitness translate into future fixtures.

Man of the Match: Andrew Peoples deserves a special mention with a superbly taken hat trick, however for the Renwick Pundit, Michael Hawthorne stood head and shoulders above his team mates. Being asked to play in 4 positions by his Manager was no mean feat and yet he performed consistently well throughout, looking dangerous with the ball and always offering good support runs. As other big names in the side became susceptible to shooting for glory and losing focus, Hawthorne remained a team player and his work rate and skill-set were an example for all.

Renwick F.C: J. McCullough; M. Hawthorne, G. Smith, B. Hanna, A. McCollum; R. Cromie, G. Blackwell, A. McKelvey, P. Aicken; J. Cromie, A. Peoples. Subs: P.Fallows


12 Responses to “Renwick play some ‘sixy’ football against C.O.I”

  1. Joel February 18, 2011 at 1:11 am #

    Wow, I was off this week. I didn’t skip class. Don’t sully my good name!

  2. Joel February 18, 2011 at 9:57 am #

    Sounds like Cromie’s second was a beautiful goal

  3. Joel February 18, 2011 at 12:02 pm #

    Also a lack of a mention for Robert’s shocking open goal miss when on a hat trick! ;)

  4. Joel February 18, 2011 at 12:31 pm #

    “first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye. ”

    GRFC v Kircubbin, 5 Feb 2011.


  5. Peter i.g. not Joel February 18, 2011 at 3:07 pm #

    There’s too many Joels on here

  6. Joel February 18, 2011 at 3:34 pm #

    I still maintain it wasn’t an open goal! :P

  7. Andy February 18, 2011 at 4:04 pm #

    The Elmwood side?

  8. Carol McMahon March 1, 2011 at 10:32 am #

    Hi there,

    My name is Carol McMahon and I am the Administrator for the Presbtyerian Chaplaincy at Queens University Belfast. I have heard rumours that you are in possession of one of our trophies. If this is the case can you please return it immediately. I know this may have been done as a practical joke but the cup has now been missing for months and we would like this to be resolved in a friendly manor before we look into it more. Thanks.
    P S If you do not have this trophie just ignore this email and sorry.

  9. Jonny March 1, 2011 at 10:54 am #

    I’m told Galgorm manor can be fairly friendly.

  10. Joel March 1, 2011 at 11:22 am #

    Malone Manor might be more handy than Galgorm – it’s right on Derryvolgie Avenue.

    “A respected and cherished relationship with our clients”

    It certainly sounds friendly.

  11. Peter March 1, 2011 at 1:08 pm #


    Having become the first Renwick team in history not to win/retain the Jonny McCollum (Memorial) Cup, have RHFC realised that their best chance of getting their hands on any silverware this season is to steal other people’s trophies??!

    Abominable behaviour!

  12. Andy March 1, 2011 at 11:49 pm #

    Utter slander.

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